Dragons Who Serve: Molly Johnson

Veterans Day honors those who have served in the United States military. MSUM recognizes the courageous efforts of the people who have dedicated their lives to protecting our freedom and rights. Many students, staff, and faculty on campus have served in this way. This week we recognize a few individuals for their sacrifice and service.  

Today we honor Molly Johnson, a senior at MSUM studying ecology and evolutionary biology with a geospatial analysis emphasis. From Moorhead, Molly's family inspired her to join the military because many of them also served. Before moving to Colorado, her sister Heidi was in the Army band and her other sister Ali served as an Air Force medic. Molly’s mom was a social worker for soldiers at the Armory in Fargo, and her father is captain of the Fargo Fire Department.

“I grew up in the lifestyle,” she says, and seeing her role models serve was a big motivator for Molly to follow in their footsteps. 

Molly has served in the North Dakota Army National Guard going on four years. She is a part of the 42R MOS as an Army musician who plays the flute and piccolo in the 188th Army Band. 

“My best experience in the military is right now. I know the people I am with, and we get to play music together,” she says. 

The fun they have with one another makes the job enjoyable and brings a positive atmosphere to the work environment. 

Molly takes great pride in her service, especially when participating in Funeral Honors. She was inspired to do this difficult job because her father also participates in Funeral Honors to remember and honor fallen firefighters. Folding the flag and presenting it to families who have lost a loved one is a tough job but being involved in the process is something she takes a lot of pride in. 

“I know a lot of families really appreciate that, and I feel like that is the most honorable thing I’ve done,” she says. 

Molly will graduate from MSUM in December and will then pursue a master’s degree in ecology and evolutionary biology at NDSU. She hopes to work as a wildlife biologist or in a field where she can conduct research on ethology. 

On behalf of MSUM, thank you for your service to this country and we wish you all the best in your academic career at MSUM and beyond. 

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